The Laoag Clergy


Visit St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Marcos, Ilocos Norte.

The CHRONOS: Monthly Diocesan Schedule for FEBRUARY 2009

July 26: Laoag's foundation anniversary and St. Anne Parish fiesta

Today, the Diocese of Laoag celebrates her 48th birthday. Today, too, is the launching of activities in commemoration of the diocese's golden anniversary in 2011.

Let us pray for our diocese. Let us pray for the increase of faith and the deepening of love and commitment to God and the Church.

Happy fiesta to the Piddiguenos!

Click here to read CBCP news on the launching.

July 25: Fiesta greetings!

Today is the feast of St. James the Greater.

Happy fiesta to our brothers and sisters in Solsona and Pasuquin!

Cadaratan Church: A Miracle in Progress

Cadaratan Church: A Miracle in Progress

The Dream Church of Our Lady of Fatima Parish, Cadaratan, Bacarra, Ilocos Norte

The Dream Church of Our Lady of Fatima Parish, Cadaratan, Bacarra, Ilocos Norte

Foundation for the church-construction project in Cadaratan, Bacarra put up!

The construction of the OUR LADY OF FATIMA PARISH CHURCH started anew, September 8, the birthday of Mama Mary. Very crucial in this project is the financial consideration being tacked by the whole parish community. To address this concern, we, the Parish Pastoral and Finance Councils, together with our newly-appointed parish priest, Rev. Leonardo L. Ruiz, planned to put up a FOUNDATION for the continuation and completion of the construction of the parish church.

The Foundation is chaired by our beloved Bishop, Most Rev. Sergio L. Utleg, D.D. and the members of the Board include Victor R. Bolosan, M.D., Rosalina R. Javier, Flordelina T. Cadelina, Eugenia M. Mendoza, Emilia B. Agonoy and Dante Subia, all from Our Lady of Fatima Parish.

Registration of the Foundation with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is under way.

Architects and Engineer: Arch. Coleen Cajigal and Arch. Joemar Bolosan, Engr. Eduardo Cid.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE IS NEEDED. For those who wish to send their donations directly through the bank, this is our bank: PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK, Batac Branch, Batac, Ilocos Norte, Philippines. DOLLAR ACCOUNT NUMBER: 158881300038; Account Name, Most Rev. Sergio L. Utleg, D.D., Victor R. Bolosan, M.D. and Flordelina T. Cadelina. PESO CHECKING ACCOUNT: 158881300020, with the same above-mentioned account name.

The Happy Priests

The Happy Priests
The clergy during their annual retreat with Bp. Mylo Vergara of the Diocese of San Jose, Nueva Ecija as retreat master at Betania Retreat House in Baguio City, November 10-13




For financial assistance or donations in-kind, please contact the Bishop or the Curia at (077)770-5210, or Fr. Lorenzo Torreflores (Baresbes, Dingras) at 0917-5701085, Fr. Danny Devaras (Carasi) at 0920-5537806, Fr. Lester Menor (Davila, Pasuquin) at 0915-7879701, Fr. Leo Ruiz (Cadaratan, Bacarra) at (077)670-3801, and Fr. Anthony Dimagiba (Sta. Rosa, Sarrat) at (077)782-2031, Fr. Antonio Calautit, SVD (Pancian, Pagudpud) at 0918-5228902.

Listen to DZEA-CMN Radio Totoo, 909 khz!

Pray for your priests. They need your prayers as much as you need theirs.

Pray for your priests. They need your prayers as much as you need theirs.
The clergy of Laoag with the lone cardinal of Thailand and the bishop of Changmai


It has been one and a half year that I have been here in Ilocos Norte. My world seems to be full of juvenile realizations, as I journey towards new experiences of discovering this new attempt of the congregation to cross the borders of Ilocanos. The quest for learning and living keeps me going. Being new to this endeavour, the lure of fledging beginnings bring my enthusiasm to seek the faces of God from this new experiences with the people. My thirst for knowledge especially for the language is vindictive, thinking that someday I could talk fluently their language. Yet, along with the thirst of knowledge and difficulties, I am trying to immerse to what it seems to be different for me.

It is true that mission in Ilocos is different especially for a Tagalog speaking like me. I studied in the seminary for ten years but I was not even taught anything about the Ilocanos. Apparently, it just portrays how the colonial mentality sinks into our culture. We pay much on learning English language and other foreign languages but we do not even hire a teacher to teach us our own local languages. Nevertheless, I am learning from the people in the places where I have been out of their inner goodness and generosity. I would say that this is the fruit of immersion and living with the people that I am gaining incomparable discoveries even in the midst of a deplorable unknown.

What makes Ilocos different for me is that obviously one may put it in jest that they are genuine Ilocano in which I am not; more so, is my feeling that I am stranger with the culture and place. I think and feel that I am awakened with the pulsating new beat from the comfort of my simple upbringing. With regard to my first feeling, I longed to find a place to welcome my eloquence. Yet, true to what Stephen Bevans said, “bold humility” is a new attitude that is needed for a thorough reflection of my participation in mission. Sometimes, I just listen even though I don’t understand what people are conversing. I could not help but look at their faces expressing who they are. Once I thought, I wish I could speak their language well, so that I could utter more. Yet thanks, presence is really sacramental that it even reaches the language of relationship.

Since I arrived in Ilocos Norte, there were three places where I have been for mission and I got some common and distinct experiences from living with the people. Yet, I think my latter experience of mission which continues until now catches a little bit of my attention. It maybe because of how it opens my Catholic thinking into a more questioning and searching experience. The place is the farthest barangay of the parish. It is even harder to reach during rainy season because aside from muddy roads you also have to cross rivers. Maybe this is one of the reasons why some say Roman Catholic priests have found hard times visiting the place or even for other pastors to come and look after their flock. But, there are pastors from other denominations who just live nearby and even some are locals in the community. This is the reality for us anyway of representing the Roman Catholic faith among the rosters of different faith. We can be considered as strangers or minorities for they are originally baptized from their faith even before. Some denominations are moving fast in preaching and converting people due to the longing of the people for faith expressions or worst due to economic reasons. When we enter the place, there are more or less seven Roman Catholics. Just like the others, they are not even practising because very seldom or even not at all that they see a priest from the parish coming to say mass or even to visit them. They don’t even know their parish priest anyway or where the parish is situated. There was even one who said that Roman Catholics are just for the city dwellers. I remember during our initial days, we are even misconstrued as doctors who would get the vital organs of the children. So they were really hesitant to accept us.

Considering these realities, to get started was one of our problems when we entered. For me, I could not see myself at first celebrating mass with the people whom I know we don’t have the same exact faith expressions or rites. So, creating friendly relationship has been our ways to communicate our presence. Through the uneasiness in the initial building of relationship, my companions found hard times to find where we could eat and sleep in the community. Those were just our initial hardships and struggles of what it seemed to be striving attempt in the middle of indefinite upshot. We first forgot our modules which we are used to in doing missions. Some of us tried joining them planting in their rice field. We began to know also some signs on how the community works towards unity like in creating irrigation for their fields.

Then, I started to celebrate mass in the community to let them know also who we are and just to lessen their suspicions about us and our presence. We are also conscious that we need not ask them to come because of our differences. We could not help but communicate that our religion and theirs deal with respect. But things get confusing for me when they began to join us in masses and actively participate in the celebrations because I know they have their own rite. Knowing that most of them or even all of them were not Roman Catholics, I felt happy of their response but I also felt uncomfortable with the situations. I was thinking whether we were bringing them to us. Yet deeply, I could feel their sincere prayer even not spoken. One can be amazed how they sing glory to God in clapping hands though they sing not like the choir in the parishes with four voices in unison but everyone joyfully sings. Even sometimes others start ahead in singing and finish the song at different times but their hearts are singing beyond what is categorized as musical. One can also be amazed how men danced during the offering. I find our mass as truly a celebration. This is different for me because it is incomparable with the celebrations in the big parishes where people seem to be rigid or stiff that even not bowing properly or just forgetting something to what is prescribed seems to be a mortal sin. So I just leave my discomfort to God and relish the meaningful celebration of our praying together. My experiences taught me to make our faith simple, not bombarded by doctrines and rules that limit the deepest and simple expression of faith.
Moreover, as what I said my experience is full of juvenile realizations. Sometimes I could not help but listen to what people say about our diversities. It is just the same and they are comfortable that we are just one and that we just have one God that we worship. That’s why joining the mass is not anymore a problem for them. It shows that for them, differences don’t matter in worship. I think this is the same belief that leads them to accept a stranger and celebrate together in prayer. It is not so complicated. Maybe it would just be sad when each religion wave its flag to conquer the other as if they are the only one who knows about God. It will be more distressing when the pastors of every flock become the inhospitable agent of unity. I presuppose that this is one of the deepest problems of harmony when leaders become antagonists and possess unwelcoming hearts. Moreover, it is even unfair when a priest or a pastor puts priority on material gains rather than higher goals in sharing with the message of God. “Let us just leave our differences in religion to God.” This is what I learned from our seminar on Ecumenism. Let us not quarrel about it because we might just achieve it in the next life. As we were sharing in mission, we are reminded that if one provokes you for debate, just ask him or her to share a meal together whatever they may have in their homes.

Now, every time I go down to the city and some people ask about the mission I am telling the same realities. Some ask how many people have I converted now to Roman Catholic. But what conversion are they talking about? If what they mean is how many people have I baptized into Roman Catholic, sorry I failed. Yet, there are few who really wanted to be baptized so I did not refuse them. But I see from my experience with the people that conversion is more than baptizing to what faith you are bringing. It is a conversion that comes from an inner transformation. One thing that I shared to them in my homily was “if you are an Aglipayan now, for you to become converted, you must strive to be a good Aglipayan. If you are a member of Pentecostal, for you to become converted you must strive to be a good member of Pentecostal, or if you are a Roman Catholic, and you want to become converted, you must strive to be a good Roman Catholic. Just like saying if you are not welcoming before, for you to become converted, you must have a welcoming heart.” Or if you consider yourself as good and if you want to be converted, be a better person or even the best you are called to be. So I was brought back to my high school or even my elementary learning which pertains to the degree of comparison when I see conversion in the middle of these differences. This experience tells me that conversion is not about the number of baptism we have conducted but by the changes of heart from hatred to love, from rejection to acceptance or from disrespect to respect. We might think of ourselves as failures for not bringing more baptisms but conversion is gaining new understanding. This conversion of respect is what I have seen as we live with the people in this mission. That’s why, like the response of Bro. Edmund Chia to a sister who ask for help in their evangelization problem, I think we have to communicate to them that our religion or being a Roman Catholic is not one which aims to annihilate their religions, but one which seeks after truth and beauty no matter where and how that is expressed.

In our celebration now, we continue to welcome each other. My discomfort is also gone, my confusions of leading them into the mystery of Christ is left behind because I know that what we are celebrating is our friendship and the gift of faith that God has bestowed on us even in our diversities. In mission, the confrontation of divergences is always brazened out especially in faith and sometimes what divide people are the interpretations, traditional practices, doctrines, competition among religions and even the long unforgotten burden of historical quarrels within. But more to it is a dream to be united. We may be one as God and Jesus are one. What I have experienced with the people in mission is acceptance of life rather than religion. It is our goodness and fine intention that lead us to the celebration of life to whatever form we expressed.

I maybe too ambitious to dream of unity and new experiences but I just don’t want to carry the scarce of history that threatens the simplicity of faith of the people or even the common goodness of everyone. Let us think anew, celebrate differently, love respectfully and live meaningfully.

THE CHRONOS: Diocesan Monthly Schedule for FEBRUARY 2009

Pro-Life Sunday
Start of Novena in honor of St. William the Hermit (cathedral); Main celebrant: Msgr. Policarpo M. Albano, 3:45 p.m.

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop is in Pasuquin for the Blessing of St. James Academy Building;
The bishop is in Sitio Godogod, Brgy. Sacritan, Pinili, for the fiesta and Sto. Nino celebration, 3: p.m.

2: Monday: Feast of the Presentation of the Lord. WHITE
World Day of Consecrated Life/Religious Life

Novena (cathedral), in charge – Southern Vicariate

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop goes to Ilagan, Isabela for a meeting.

3: Tuesday: 4th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN. or m. of St. Blasé, bishop and martyr. RED. or m. of St. Ansgar, bishop. WHITE

NATIONAL SUPERINTENDENTS’ CONVENTION IN LAOAG (3-5), Palazzo de Laoag Hotel and Aurelio’s Mansion;
Novena (cathedral), in charge – Northern Vicariate

4: Wednesday: 4th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop officiates the Eucharistic celebration of the CEAP Convention, Cathedral, 8:00 a.m.

Novena (cathedral), in charge – Central Vicariate

Let us pray for:
Rev. Victor F. Calma (Priestly Ordination Anniversary)

5: Thursday: St. Agatha, virgin and martyr. RED.

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop visits Gubang, Vintar

Novena (cathedral), in charge – Seminary Fathers

6: Friday: St. Pedro Bautista, St. Paul Miki, priests, and Companions, martyrs. RED.

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop officiates mass on the occasion of the Foundation Day of Ilocos Norte National High School

Novena (cathedral), in charge – Eastern Vicariate

7: Saturday: 4th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN or m. of BVM. WHITE.

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop officiates the mass for the 3rd Order of MCST Sisters at the Carmelite chapel, 5:00 p.m.

Novena (cathedral), in charge – SVD Fathers

Novena (cathedral), in charge – Bishop’s Residence Priests

9: Monday: 5th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

ALL VICARIAL MEETINGS AT THE BISHOP’S RESIDENCE, 4:00 p.m.; SHORT CONFERENCE WITH BP. JACK JOSE, re: Management of Clergy Hospitaliztion Fund, 5:00 p.m.

Novena (cathedral), in charge – Cathedral Priests and Redemptorists

Let us pray for:
Rev. Jesus Cirilo R. Bala, Jr. (Birthday)

10: Tuesday: St. Scholastica, virgin. WHITE


11: Wednesday: 5th Week, Ordinary Time (GREEN) or m. of Our Lady of Lourdes (WHITE)
World Day of the Sick

PATRONAL FIESTA OF OUR LADY OF LOURDES, Brgy. Balatong, Laoag City, Concelebrated Mass 8:30 a.m.

12: Thursday: 5th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

13: Friday: 5th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

PASTORAL BOARD MEETING, 9:00 a.m., Conference Hall, Bishop’s Residence

14: Saturday: St. Cyril, monk and St. Methodius, bishop. WHITE
Catechetical Coordinators’ Meeting, 9:00 a.m.; Conference Hall, Bishop’s Residence


16: Monday: 6th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN


17: Tuesday: 6th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN or m. of the Seven Founders of the Orders of Servites. WHITE

18: Wednesday: 6th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN.

19: Thursday: 6th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

20: Friday: 6th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

21: Saturday: 6th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN. Or m. of St. Peter Damian, bishop and doctor. WHITE. or m. of the BVM. WHITE.


23: Monday: St. Polycarp, bishop and martyr. RED

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop is in KIdapawan, North Cotabato for the ECIP Meeting (23-24)

Let us pray for:
Rev. Victor F. Calma (Birthday)

24: Tuesday: 7th Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN


Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop is at the cathedral for the Ash Wednesday

Let us pray for:
Rev. Victor F. Calma (Birthday)

26: Thursday: Lenten Weekday. VIOLET

27: Friday: Lenten Weekday. VIOLET

28: Saturday: Lenten Weekday. VIOLET

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop has a Confirmation to officiate at St. James Parish, Solsona, 9:00 a.m.

THE CHRONOS: Diocesan Monthly Schedule for January 2009

The Chronos for January 2009

Octave Day of Christmas
Day of World Peace

Bishop’s Schedule:
Celebrates mass in Adams

2: Friday: Sts. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen, bishops and doctors. WHITE

Let us pray for:
Rev. Manuel Aspiras (Birthday)

3: Saturday: Weekday of Christmas Season. WHITE. or m. of the Most Holy Name of Jesus. WHITE.


5: Monday: Weekday of Christmas Season, WHITE.

VICARIAL MEETINGS, 5 p.m., Bishop’s Residence (all vicariates)

6: Tuesday: Weekday of Christmas Season. WHITE.

Let us pray for:
Rev. Rey Magus S. Respicio (Birthday)

7: Wednesday: Weekday of Christmas Season. WHITE

Commission on Clergy Meeting, Bishop’s Residence, 9:00 a.m.

8: Thursday: Weekday of Christmas Season. WHITE

9: Friday: Weekday of Christmas Season. WHITE

10: Saturday: Weekday of Christmas Season. WHITE


Let us pray for:
Msgr. Manuel R. Lamprea,Jr. (Priestly Anniversary)


12: Monday: 1st Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

Let us pray for:
Rev. Phillip Anthony R. Dimagiba (Birthday)

PRESBYTERAL ASSEMBLY starts at 3:00 p.m. with games at SMS; 6:00 p.m., Holy Hour at Foyer de Charite.

13: Tuesday: 1st Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN


14: Wednesday: 1st Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

15: Thursday: 1st Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

Bishop’s Schedule:
Officiates Confirmation at the Divine Word College of Laoag

16: Friday: 1st Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

17: Saturday: St. Anthony, abbot. WHITE

Let us pray for:
Rev. Franklin D. Gorospe (Birthday)

Bishop’s Schedule:
Commission on Family and Life Meeting

18: +FEAST OF THE STO. NIÑO (Proper Feast in the Philippines). WHITE.
2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Let us pray for:
Msgr. Leobardo B. Lorenzo (Birthday)

19: Monday: 2nd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop is in Manila for the CBCP Meeting

20: Tuesday: 2nd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN or m. of St. Fabian, pope and martyr. RED or m. of St. Sebastian, martyr. RED

21: Wednesday: St. Agnes, virgin, martyr. RED.

22: Thursday: 2nd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN or m. of St. Vincent, deacon, martyr. RED

23: Friday: 2nd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

24: Saturday: St. Francis de Sales, bishop and doctor. WHITE

National Bible Sunday

26: Monday: Sts. Timothy and Titus, bishops. WHITE

Let us pray for:
Msgr. Policarpo M. Albano (Birthday)

27: Tuesday: 3rd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN. or m. of St. Angela Merici, virgin. WHITE.

Bishop’s Schedule:
The bishop is in Vigan for the INNILIW

28: Wednesday: St. Thomas Aquinas, priest and doctor. WHITE

Let us pray for:
Rev. Nolasco M. Pascua, Jr. (Birthday)

29: Thursday: 3rd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN.

30: Friday: 3rd Week, Ordinary Time. GREEN

31: Saturday: St. John of Bosco, priest. WHITE

PATRONAL FIESTA OF ST. JOHN BOSCO PARISH, Baresbes, Dingras, Concelebrated Mass, 9:00 a.m.

CATECHETICAL AND MISSION OFFICE: Outreach in Adams, October 29, 2008

CATECHETICAL AND MISSION OFFICE: Diocesan Catechetical Day, September 20, 2008, Part 1 (2)

CATECHETICAL AND MISSION OFFICE: Diocesan Catechetical Day, September 20, 2008, Part 2 (2)

COM. ON THE CLERGY & OFF. ON CH. HERITAGE: Convocation (Playa Tropical, Currimao, Aug.18-20, 2008)